Socialist Worker

Tube workers are ready to extend strikes for victimised rep

Issue No. 2257

London Underground drivers struck in defence of victimised union rep Arwyn Thomas last Sunday, and they are prepared to take more action next week.

The RMT union members are planning to join the co‑ordinated day of strikes on Thursday 30 June.

The strikes will hit London Underground between 9.01pm on Monday of next week and 11.59am on Tuesday, 12 noon on Wednesday and Thursday and 12 noon and 9pm on Friday.

The drivers voted for strikes in defence of Arwyn and Eamonn Lynch. Eamonn won his Employment Tribunal and management agreed to reinstate him and hold talks to resolve Arwyn’s case.

The RMT then agreed to call off their strikes. But bosses instructed their legal team not to discuss re-employing Arwyn and only talk about a financial settlement—which Arwyn rejected.

The union estimates that tube bosses have spent £250,000 victimising Arwyn. He has already won an interim relief hearing as part of his Employment Tribunal. This means he is on full pay.

Management’s intransigence was seen at a meeting at the Acas conciliation service.

Bosses refused to discuss re-employing Arwyn and stated that even if the Employment Tribunal found 100 percent in Arwyn’s favour, they still would not guarantee to reinstate him.

It is right for the union to take action and pressurise management.

Tube bosses have targeted Arwyn and other reps as they are out to weaken the RMT so as to drive through cuts across the network.

Everyone should support this fight, which is also about defending the service.

Heathrow Express workers plan pay strike

Members of the RMT union at Heathrow Express were set to strike on Sunday and Monday of next week in their pay fight.

They are to strike for 24 hours from 9.15am on Sunday, and will also take action short of a strike before and after the walkout. It follows a rock solid 48-hour strike in May that caused massive disruption to services and the total closure of Heathrow Connect.

Workers overwhelmingly voted for strikes against a pay offer that is well short of the RPI inflation figure and is loaded with strings.

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Article information

Tue 21 Jun 2011, 18:00 BST
Issue No. 2257
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